Should I learn Basque Language?
Basque (euskara) is the traditional language spoken in the Basque Country. It is perhaps the only isolated language that still coexists with the languages of Europe, both genetically and typologically.
Euskera is of the ergative and binding type, Basque, which was called Aquitaine in antiquity and also lingua Navarrorum (the language of the Navarrese) in the Middle Ages, therefore it is the oldest in situ language in Western Europe that still enjoys great splendor, despite the obstacles that have been placed on them in the modern and contemporary historical process.
Where is Basque spoken?
In 2016, a sociolinguistic survey of the Basque Country was carried out, which identified 700,300 Basque speakers aged 16 and over in the provinces of Vizcaya, Álava, Guipuscoa, and Navarra and 51,202 in the French Basque Country, that is, on 28, 4% of the total population. The total number of speakers is 1,185,500, including receptive bilinguals, or 44.8% of the population. About 10,000 people are unilingual Basque speakers. Basque is also spoken in its diaspora.
A little history
Basque (or its immediate predecessor, archaic Basque) was the language that was spoken in a wide area on both sides of the Pyrenees, spanning from the Garonne River and Bordeaux to the north; the Sierra de la Demanda and Moncayo to the south (including all of La Rioja and the north of Soria); areas of Cantabria and Burgos to the west; and Andorra to the east.
There is toponymic and epigraphic evidence of its presence throughout this area. For example, in the north of the province of Soria, there are dozens of Basque place names such as Urbión, Larralde, Acebal de Garagüeta de Arévalo de la Sierra, Garray or Narros. According to recent epigraphic studies, the presence of Basque in Soria predates the imposition of a Celtic language and later Latin.
The evidence of the presence of Basque in the north of Soria has been supported by a genetic study carried out in 2017 by the Human Genetics and Statistics departments of the University of Oxford (United Kingdom), the Galician Public Foundation for Genomic Medicine of Santiago de Compostela and the Genomic Medicine Group of the Compostela University, which has determined that the Sorians of the northern part of the province, which includes the Highlands, Almarza and Pinares regions, have certain coincidences in their genome with the genetic characteristics of the Basque and Navarre population, although their similarities are more important with the central and northeastern areas of the peninsula. .
To start learning Basque, there is the AEK method. The courses are divided into 5 levels: A1, A2, B1, B2, and C1, with C1 being the highest level of proficiency in the language.
AEK has defined several levels (0, A1, A2, B1, B2, and C1) and divides each level in two. Therefore, to reach level B1, the student must go through six sublevels. Every three weeks, they try to move them from one sublevel to another. To do this, each week goals are defined and teachers coordinate to help students progress.
Initial formation: L1, L2, l3, and the path of Basque studies
The Basque Studies course of the LLCER license (Foreign and Regional Languages, Literature and Civilizations) is taught from the first year on the Bayonne Campus of the University of Pau and the Pays de Adour. Its objective is to help students who are already Basque speakers to improve their oral and written skills in Basque, broaden and deepen their knowledge of the Basque cultural field, and apply this knowledge and skills in professional contexts.
Basque language certification
What is the Basque Certification System (DLCB)?
The DCLB is used to check and validate the level of language proficiency in Basque. It is established on the basis of the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) which establishes 6 levels of competence: A1, A2, B1, B2, C1, and C2. Level C1 is that of the experienced and autonomous user of a language.
Each year, test sessions for level C1 (2 sessions) and B1EA (1 session) are organized. The system is based on a collaboration between the Public Office of Euskera and the Interuniversity Department of Basque Studies (DIEB) of the UPPA and Bordeaux Montaigne.
To acquire level A1, an initial user, a calculation of 125 teaching hours is planned, depending on the initial position of the student, as well as a forecast of another 75 hours for personal learning and autonomous use of the language by the student.
Having an A2 level means meeting clear criteria for learning a foreign language . These criteria are the same in all CEFR countries, so an English or German must validate the same skills to obtain an A2 level.
The B1 certification is based on a framework that includes 5 skills (communication skills, language skills, strategic skills, text skills and socio-pragmatic skills) in 4 areas: listening, speaking, writing, and writing.
Level B2: Advanced user
At the end of this level, the student will be able to understand most of the texts on general and abstract topics, both in direct interactions and through the media, distinguishing the main ideas from the secondary ones. Likewise, in everyday contexts, they will be able to interact fluently with friends, co-workers, and Basque speakers, offer information, request opinions, defend their point of view, etc., and express themselves fluently and effectively, distinguishing significant aspects from details of the information to be transmitted.
Level C1: Proficient user
At the end of this level, the student will be able to understand all kinds of texts such as conversations, debates, and exhibitions pertaining to their immediate environment, work, or that of the media, as well as those expressed in the dialect of their environment.
At the production level, in colloquial interactions, and in the workplace, you will be able to express your ideas and opinions fluently and effectively in an extensive and detailed way. In addition to making your point of view known by offering complimentary ideas and appropriate examples, developing well-structured, clear, and precise texts, distinguishing the main ideas from the secondary ones, and selecting the appropriate linguistic exponents to achieve the intended objective.
Level C2: Expert user
At the end of this level, the student will be able to understand complex texts on general topics. As well as to produce them efficiently, correctly, and precisely, both in their work and professional environment and in the media. They will be able to express the contents related to these topics with great fluency and precision, distinguishing connotations of meaning in highly complex situations.